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Jay Gearing & Ben Rogaly

In Workers, ten individuals give personal and sometimes moving accounts of warehouse and food factory work, and reflect on their creative lives within and beyond the workplace. Their stories reveal some of the harsh employment conditions in contemporary capitalist workplaces in these sectors, and confirm the power inequalities inherent in them. Taken together, the films evoke a story of how workplace experiences have changed over a forty-year period with intensified pressure on agency workers in warehouses through higher productivity targets, longer distances to cover each day, and computerised policing of breaks. Using multiple and varied narratives, the ten chapters of the film disrupt taken-for-granted and common sense categories often used to stereotype people such as ‘factory workers’, ‘warehouse workers’ or ‘migrants’. It is hoped that the solidarity to be found in this can contribute to challenging oppressive workplace conditions.

Jay Gearing is an independent film-maker based in Peterborough under the guise of Red 7 Productions. He directed and co-produced Workers.

Ben Rogaly teaches in the Department of Geography at the University of Sussex, UK. He researched and co-produced Workers.

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